Aug 26 15

Checking in with Larry Birger Scholarship winner Mina Kimes


Coming up in October 2015, rbb will present the second Larry Birger Young Business Journalist of the Year Award at the National Society of Business Editor and Writers (SABEW) fall conference in New York City.

The award, named after one of rbb’s founders and former Miami Herald business editor and SABEW president, recognizes the work of young journalists and provides one grand prize winner with a $1,500 cash prize and an all-expenses paid trip to NYC to accept the award at the fall conference.

With the big day coming up, rbb conducted an email interview with last year’s winner, Mina Kimes, a highly acclaimed writer with We wanted to get her thoughts on the Larry Birger award, as well as her advice for other journalists and how PR people can get on her good side.

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Posted in: Marketing, Public Relations

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Aug 11 15

4 reasons PR pros make the best cocktail party dates


This story was co-written by Sasha Blaney.

As public relations professionals, we’re expected to be knowledgeable about our clients, well-versed on current events and quick on our feet.

It just so happens that the qualities that make us good at our jobs also make us the best date for any party!

If you’re looking for a companion that you won’t have to babysit all night, look no further than your friends in the public relations industry. Learn why our industry is full of professionals who know how to work a room and impress your boss.

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Posted in: Public Relations

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Aug 6 15

3 ways the FPA convention reshaped the way I think about journalists


I recently had the honor of attending the Florida Press Association Convention in Orlando. I have always respected the work of journalists – at one point I even aspired to be one. But these days I focus my time on becoming a PR pro, where I spend a lot of the day emailing, calling, and (dare I say) “stalking” reporters for stories.

After spending 48 hours surrounded by these professionals, I have a newfound respect for the industry and am excited about the many possibilities the future holds for bringing the press and public relations together.

My journey began sitting in banquet halls listening to the highs and lows of being a reporter in today’s digital world. It was here that I learned…

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Posted in: Public Relations


Jul 22 15

Trumping civic engagement: How “The Donald” is spotlighting the political process


Donald Trump

Donald Trump ignited a firestorm with his “not a war hero” comments directed toward John McCain. While it’s hard to argue that these, along with his previous comments about Mexicans, were anything but distasteful, they also may bring a lot of good.

Love or hate him, “The Donald” always draws a crowd. I would venture to guess that since he entered the presidential race there are more people paying attention to a primary election cycle than ever before.

Politics aside, I have always admired many of Donald Trump’s PR skills. If there is a trending news story even tangentially related to one of his business operations, he is usually right in the middle of it. He makes himself readily available to the media, and they return the favor with ongoing coverage.

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Posted in: Business Thoughts

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Jul 21 15

The value of designing multi-generational marketing campaigns


Everyone’s talking about millennials – from what they buy, to where they choose to live and how they read their news. With the 2016 election season ramping up, you can expect millennials to stay in the headlines as candidates work to activate this huge voting block with a notoriously low turnout.

However, while this generation may have captured the attention of marketers, political strategists and media outlets, they still only make up 30 percent of the adult population and represent less than one fourth of discretionary spending.

In short, don’t forget about the “70 percent” – Generation X, baby boomers and the Silent Generation.

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Posted in: Marketing, Public Relations

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Jul 16 15

The most demanding client – ever


About three months ago, I met my most demanding client to date. In fact, the day I met her she was screaming and I cried.

Working 24/7 has taken on new meaning. She doesn’t care what hour she calls. 3 a.m. is no different to her than 3 p.m. Oh, and of course she doesn’t pay me.

But I honestly don’t mind, because being a mother is amazing.

I truly don’t know which is harder: being a stay-at-home mom or a working parent. Thankfully working for a company that has a flexible work policy makes it a little easier.

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Posted in: Public Relations

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Jul 9 15

5 tips to improve your public speaking skills as a PR pro


This story was co-written by Stacy Merrick.

With today’s technological possibilities, it can often be tempting to hide behind your computer – emailing colleagues and clients instead of calling them, or sending a deck instead of making a presentation in person.

But strong public speaking skills and effectively communicating your ideas verbally go a long way in building not only your clients’ confidence in you, but confidence in yourself.

Recognizing the opportunity to help us enhance our skills in public speaking, two of our colleagues created the rbb Toastmasters program. The program, modeled after the worldwide Toastmasters phenomenon, allows participants to perfect their speaking skills in both formal and informal speeches throughout the event.

Having participated in the program ourselves, we have learned several tips for how to speak confidently and more importantly, how these skills can be translated into our daily tasks in the PR world.

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Posted in: Public Relations

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Jul 8 15

Women’s World Cup: A long-term PR victory?


Recently, the Women’s World Cup Final drew record numbers for a soccer match – men’s or women’s – and once again kicked off the discussion about the ongoing narrative surrounding the place of women’s sports role in a male dominated field.

To delve deeper into the issue of narrative storytelling, the role social media can play in extending the discussion and how corporations leveraged the opportunity, I conducted a brief Q&A with Natalie P. Mikolich. Natalie is the 2016 Chair-Elect of PRSA’s Entertainment and Sports Section and current manager of the section’s social media channels.

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Posted in: Public Relations, Social Media

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Jul 7 15

Leading by example: 5 questions with rbb CEO Christine Barney


“Look to lead, not just follow.”

There’s a reason rbb is often awarded “Best Place To Work,” and it starts with CEO Christine Barney’s workplace philosophies. The above quote isn’t a canned message point; those are words Christine believes in to establish an employee-driven workplace.

At rbb, we have always been encouraged to join civic organizations in the community to develop our professional relationships and involve ourselves beyond our everyday work life, thus fostering our inspirations outside of PR.

That’s something Christine took to heart when she was recently named the Chairman for the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce. In her welcome speech, she spoke of her career and the path that has led her to where she is today.

Given my personal experience with PRSA Miami and the Chamber’s HYPE committee, I wanted to know more about her journey to becoming the Chairman and what advice she could offer budding PR pros.

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Posted in: Business Thoughts

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Jun 18 15

Interview with Marianne Cusato: HuffPo blogger shares pitching pet peeves, tips


This story was co-written by Sasha Blaney.

Social media may have changed the way people consume news, but it is bloggers who continue to have an increasingly significant impact on the journalism world today. In fact, 6.7 million bloggers produce 58.7 million new posts each month and successfully reach 77 percent of all Internet users.

With such a vast audience consuming that many blog posts each month, it is imperative for PR pros to educate themselves on the best practices for pitching these media giants.

The role of blogs today has expanded beyond simply serving as an outlet for personal expression; oftentimes, major blogs become established brands that resonate with readers. In a recent study, 84 percent of readers said they make purchase decisions based on blog content they have read.

Above all, bloggers’ greatest strength is eliciting trust from their readers through honest and opinionated posts or media appearances as subject matter experts.

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Posted in: Public Relations